Finnish Air Force
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Air Force

Current Title: Suomen Ilmavoimat
Title in English: Finnish Air Force
Abbreviation: FinAF


Narrative Summary:
Several aircraft were presented to the Finnish White Army, for use during the 1919-1920 civil war by Swedish pilots and Finnish observers. This unit was known as the Finnish Flying Corps. A French military mission arrived in June 1919 to help re-organise military forces. In 1920 the Finnish Air Force was created as an independent air arm. In 1924 a British military mission arrived to plan future development. The 'Winter War' started on 30 November 1939, and ended on 11 March 1940 when Finland accepted Soviet peace terms. On 25 June 1941, following Germany's launch of 'Operation Barbarossa', Finland declared war on Russia. Offensive operations commenced on 30 June 1941 with German assistance, thus starting the 'Continuation War'. On 4 September 1944 a conditional ceasefire was agreed between Russia and Finland, and peace negotiations initiated. During the period 2 October 1944 to 25 April 1945 Finnish forces drove the German forces out of Finland. A Peace Treaty limiting the size of the air force was signed on 10 February 1947.

Key Dates:
1918?    Finnish Flying Corps established
1920    Finnish Air Force created
1953    First jet aircraft delivered - Vampire
1961    First helicopters received - SM-1 (Mi-2)

Current Status:
To be added

Future Plans:
Replace L-70 Vinka and Piper aircraft with a single type.


National Insignia:
Current --- Historical

Aircraft Serial Numbering System(s):

The Finnish military serial numbering system consists of a two-letter prefix designating the basic aircraft type and a two or three figure number for each airframe, e.g. Magister FM-26.


Aircraft Designation System(s):
None - Manufacturers designations used.

Current Aircraft Inventory:
Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List:
Alphabetical Order --- Chronological Order

Aircraft NOT Used:
False reports of aircraft on order or in service


Main Headquarters:
PL3041161, Tikkakoski, Jyväskylä.

Current Organisational Structure:
The air force is organised into three air-defence wings, each with a fighter squadron assigned to one of three air defence areas. A small number of centrally controlled squadrons provide general support facilities.

Current Order of Battle:
Table of Current Order of Battle

Historical Orders of Battle:
List of Historical Orders of Battle - to be added.

All-Time Flying Units List:
To be added.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases:
The main air bases currently used are Halli, Jyväskylä-Luonetjarvi, Kauhava, Kuopio-Rissala, Rovaniemi and Tampere-Pirkkala.

All-Time Air Bases Used List:
In addition to the main bases, there are also a number of smaller airports and airfields around the country which are sometimes used by the Air Force.
Military Air Bases Listing - to be added.

More Information


Finnish Military Aviation Bibliography - to be added.


World Air Power Journal No.5 p.144-146
Air International February 1997
Air Forces Research No.1
Combat Aircraft June-July 1997
Combat Aircraft Aug-Sept 1997
Air Forces Monthly April 1998
Scramble March 1997


Finnish Defence Forces Official Website

wikipedia: Finnish Air Force
wikipedia: Aircraft of the Finnish Air Force

Scramble: Finnish Air Force

Air-Britain Photos: Finnish Air Force

Fighter Tactics Academy

Backwoods Landing Strip - Finnish Air Force Aircraft

Kari Stenman Publishing

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First Created: 12 March 1997 - Last Revised: 5 June 2008
Copyright © 1997 John Hayles.    e-mail: